• Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told Fox News on Wednesday that his platform would not follow Twitter and fact-check claims by President Donald Trump.
  • “I believe strongly that Facebook shouldn’t be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online,” said Zuckerberg.
  • On Tuesday, Twitter for the first time added a fact-check warning to a false claim that Trump made about mail-in voting.
  • In response, Trump is preparing to sign an executive order erasing legal protections that social media companies have against being sued for what people say on their platforms.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that the platform would not be following Twitter’s example to fact-check claims made by President Donald Trump.

His comments came after Twitter, for the first time, added a fact-check warning to a tweet by Trump, in which he made false claims about mail-in ballots and voter fraud.

“We have a different policy than Twitter on this,” Zuckerberg told Fox News’ Dana Perino on Wednesday.

“I believe strongly that Facebook shouldn’t be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online. I think in general, private companies shouldn’t be, especially these platform companies, shouldn’t be in the position of doing that.”

On Wednesday night Trump dramatically escalated a dispute with social media companies, drawing up an executive order designed to cut back the legal protections that they have to shield them against liability for what is said on their platforms.

On Tuesday the president had written two tweets claiming: “There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent.”

Twitter tagged both two messages with an exclamation point and warning message, and linked to several news articles debunking the claim.

The president has responded with fury, renewing claims that social media companies are seeking to censor conservatives.

But a rift is opening between Twitter and Facebook over the best approach to take towards the conspiracy theories, falsehoods and smears Trump frequently spreads on social media.

On Wednesday Facebook said it would take no action against an identical message posted by the president on its platform to the one Twitter had fact-checked.

President Donald Trump and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Foto: President Donald Trump and Zuckerberg at the White House in September 2019. Source: Facebook/Donald Trump

Facebook has introduced new measures to make misinformation and disinformation less visible on its platform, including false claims about voter registration and voting processes.

But messages from politicians and political campaigns are exempt.

“What I believe is that in a democracy, it’s really important that people can see for themselves what politicians are saying, so they can make their own judgments,” Zuckerberg told CBS News in December, in defense of the policy.

“And, you know, I don’t think that a private company should be censoring politicians or news.”

His full interview with Fox News will air later on Thursday.